In February, Paws & Effect was made aware of a particularly difficult circumstance involving an Iowa National Guardsmen who returned from Afghanistan this past July. This Soldier, who has served three combat tours and is not yet 30 years old, was diagnosed with ALS (commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease). He is married with two young children and works full time for the Iowa National Guard at an armory. This disease will quickly deprive him of physical independence, with some symptoms already apparent. His lifespan is anticipated to be three years.
Paws & Effect immediately committed to placing Service Dog Archer with this Soldier to help offset his physical impairments. Archer will be introduced to his new family on March 19 and will return home with them on March 30. While the practice has been that each service member receive their service dog free of charge, Paws & Effect has decided to take this a step further: they are committed to seeing that no expense be borne by this family at any time to care for Archer. Paws & Effect is committed to covering all future food, veterinarian’s expenses, toys and unanticipated costs, so that other money can be utilized to support the family.
The Iowa National Guard made immediate accommodation to allow Archer access to work with this Soldier at the armory at which he is stationed full time. The Army, rarely faced with this circumstance, made clear their commitment with their swift response. Our hope is that the community will support this effort as well.
Please help us by making a donation to Paws & Effect. The immediate costs exceed $5,000. These include room and board while this Soldier attends a two-week training course at Camp Dodge, Archer’s annual exam, Frontline, Heartguard, a six-month supply of dog food, a crate, bed and toys.
Donations less than $50 may be placed online at www.paws-effect.org. Additionally, donations may be directed to:
Paws & Effect
Des Moines, IA 50311
or deposited directly into Paws & Effect’s account at Wells Fargo.